Over the past 2 years, the Corporate Systems team in IS&T has invested heavily in IT service management training for their staff. This has focussed on ITIL (the industry-recognised best practice methodology for IT Service management) and Agile training (a requirements and solutions approach to software development). In addition, newly trained staff were asked to use their recently-acquired knowledge to assess the methods and processes used within the organisation and to analyse where further improvements could be made. This is part of a long term plan to give Corporate Systems staff the techniques necessary to confidently handle suppliers and stakeholders, manage changes and control the release and deployment of software.
The improvements resulting from this training are now beginning to be recognised by areas of the University outside IS&T. Recently, we’ve had feedback from HWB and BIS about projects we’ve been involved in and the value these techniques have added to the business.
These are some of the comments we’ve received recently:
Philip Wain, Head of Faculty Professional Services in Health and Wellbeing commented about the involvement of Corporate Systems staff who’ve undergone this training in the placements project:
“As business lead for the Placement management project, I have seen at first-hand the positive impact of the application of this approach to the development of the software for this project. Whilst this approach has only been applied in the latter stages of the project, it has significantly improved our ability to manage and control developments which in turn has assisted us in enabling key milestones to be met.
“I am confident that had this approach been applied from the outset we would have been able to deliver this project significantly quicker than is currently anticipated.”
Claire Boot, who worked with IS&T corporate systems staff on the DSST project found that the approaches used worked really well and that using prototype sessions helped drive out requirements and get the buy in of key stakeholders: “The team are really pleased with the development work”, she says “and the fantastic progress made will have a real impact on work flow and reporting capability.
The success of this work has prompted Corporate Systems to look at ways of continuing to develop and improve their IT Service Management processes via workshops and more focussed training opportunities and special interest groups. Keith Burton, Service Manager in Corporate Systems, has produced a report into the benefits of training given to staff performing different roles within the department and the value for IS&T’s business partners. His report has identified priorities for future IT Service Management process improvements and follow up work which will enhance the skills and confidence of Corporate Systems staff even further.